Written with love, by Jennifer Dene Richardson
Planning a wedding is like taking on a second job, which is why trying to change your diet at the same time might feel nearly impossible. Obviously you want to look and feel your best on your big day, but the thought of overhauling your eating habits can be really overwhelming.
The good news is that you can achieve quick (and noticeable) changes in how your body looks and feels by making simple swaps to the foods you eat on a regular basis.
Today I’m going to share with you three easy ingredient-swaps that will bring you closer to your dream bridal body, without the added stress of changing your entire diet.
Swap white/wholewheat toast for rye or sprouted grain bread
Did you know that white bread has the same impact on your blood sugar as a candy bar? (Source) What you might not know is that wholewheat breads cause the same reaction. This is because once the wholegrain is pulverized into flour to make bread, it becomes much easier to digest and causes rapid spikes in blood sugar.
Have you ever noticed that you’re hungry only a couple of hours after eating white or wholewheat toast for breakfast? That’s your blood sugar crashing back down from its refined-flour high.
Try swapping white or wholewheat bread, with rye or sprouted whole grain bread. These breads contain more vitamins, minerals and fiber from the original grain, and are digested more slowly, providing you with more sustained energy throughout the day.
When you read the label the first ingredient must be a whole grain (such as whole rye or whole wheat).
To make this swap even healthier try a sprouted whole grain bread such as Ezekiel; sprouting grains reduces the amount of phytic acid and makes them easier to digest.
Swap mayonnaise for full fat greek yogurt
Commercial mayonnaise is often made with low quality ingredients and unhealthy fats like cheap vegetable oils. Vegetable oils, such as canola or soy bean oil, are high in Omega 6, an essential fatty acid that most Americans consume in excess. A healthy diet should have a 3:1 ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 fatty acids, however the standard western diet is closer to a ratio of 15:1 (source). A diet high in Omega 6 fats is prone to inflammation, which means that not only will it be harder to lose weight and keep it off, you are also putting yourself at risk for serious medical complications. In addition to these low-quality oils, many mayonnaises are high in sugar and artificial ingredients to keep them shelf-stable.
You could of course make your own mayonnaise with egg yolks, olive oil and lemon juice, but my preferred recommendation for the busy bride is to swap your mayo for full fat greek yogurt.
Greek yogurt has greater amounts of protein and much less fat than mayonnaise. In fact, one tablespoon of mayonnaise has five grams of fat, whereas one tablespoon of full fat greek yogurt has less than one gram! Plus greek yogurt is equally happy on your breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack plate, making it a truly versatile ingredient.
Swap half your pasta for spiralized vegetables
I love a bowl of pasta as much as the next person, but unfortunately too much of a good thing can wreak havoc on your bridal body.
Similar to the quickly digested flours found in bread, pasta is made from refined ingredients that can negatively impact your blood sugar levels. When blood sugar yo-yos it often leads to cravings, overeating, bad moods and even bloating.
Plus, let’s be honest, it’s really hard to stick to a single 1/2 cup serving of pasta.
To make this a healthy swap try choosing quinoa or brown rice pasta and then bulking out your plate with spiralized vegetables. I love to “zoodle” zucchinis, but you can also use sweet potatoes or carrots.
+To make vegetable noodles use a vegetable peeler and shave lengthways into long ribbons.
+To cook vegetable noodles add them at the very end of the pasta cooking time, they only need about 1 or 2 minutes.
I hope that you enjoyed these ideas and I’d love to hear one healthy swap that you will choose this week to make a small but powerful change to your wedding ready diet.
Jennifer Dene XO